Nga Lee (Sally) Ng
Associate Professor, School of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering
Abstract: Organic aerosols constitute a significant fraction of submicron fine particulate matter (PM) in the atmosphere. Secondary organic aerosols (SOA) formed from condensation of low-volatility species produced by oxidation of gas-phase organic compounds often dominate the mass of atmospheric organic aerosols. Understanding the formation of SOA has proven to be a challenge owing to the difficulty in identifying and quantifying all the gas-phase precursors as well as the complex, multi-generation oxidative chemistry that leads to the aerosol formation. Laboratory chamber experiments provide the basic understanding needed for predicting SOA formation. Ambient field measurements provide important datasets for understanding the chemistry and life cycles of atmospheric aerosols. In this work, we employed an integrated laboratory and field measurement approach to investigate how emissions from human activities (e.g., SO2, NOx) interact with emissions from trees in the formation of SOA. We will also discuss oxidative stress induced by laboratory and ambient aerosols for understanding their impacts on human health upon exposure.
Bio: Dr. Nga Lee (Sally) Ng is an associate professor and Tanner Faculty Fellow in the School of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering and the School of Earth & Atmospheric Sciences. She earned her doctorate in Chemical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology and was a postdoctoral scientist at Aerodyne Research Inc. Dr. Ng’s research focuses on the understanding of the chemical mechanisms of aerosol formation and composition, as well as their health effects. Her group combines laboratory chamber studies and ambient field measurements to study aerosols using advanced mass spectrometry techniques. Dr. Ng serves as a co-editor of Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics and a member of the Editorial Board of Scientific Reports and ACS Earth and Space Chemistry. Dr. Ng is named among the world’s most highly cited researchers (top 1% of Geoscience). Dr. Ng’s research contribution has also been recognized by the Sheldon K. Friedlander Award and the Kenneth T. Whitby Award from the American Association for Aerosol Research, the EPA Early Career Award, the Health Effects Institute Walter A. Rosenblith New Investigator Award, and the NSF CAREER Award.